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Deputy Defence Minister Adly Zahari of Malaysia recently addressed concerns related to the ongoing crisis between Russia and Ukraine and its potential impact on the procurement of components and spare parts for the Sukhoi Su-30MKM aircraft used by the Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF). While acknowledging that the crisis has indirectly affected the supply chain, he outlined the steps that Malaysia is taking to ensure the continued operational readiness of its aircraft fleet.

The Sukhoi Su-30MKM aircraft has been a cornerstone of Malaysia’s air defence capabilities, and its operational continuity is of paramount importance. Adly Zahari highlighted the fact that, despite the challenges, Malaysia has established a contingency plan to ensure that the required spare parts and components for the aircraft are available when needed.

As part of this plan, the RMAF has collaborated with Aerospace Technology Systems Corporation (ATSC), an appointed local company, to ensure a steady supply of necessary spare parts from Russia. ATSC has played a pivotal role in maintaining the Su-30MKM aircraft by performing comprehensive overhauls for every 1,500 hours of flight or after 10 years of operation.

However, given the uncertainties surrounding the supply chains due to the Russia-Ukraine crisis, Malaysia is prepared to explore alternative avenues to ensure the continuous availability of spares and components. Adly Zahari mentioned that, if the need arises, Malaysia is open to engaging in discussions with the Indian state-owned company Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) to procure necessary supplies.

HAL has already offered its services to the RMAF for servicing the Su-30MKM aircraft in India, which could provide an alternative solution to the spares and components challenges. Additionally, Adly Zahari shared that the RMAF is actively implementing a Service Life Extension Programme for the Sukhoi aircraft. This program aims to extend the operational lifespan of the aircraft, ensuring their optimal usage and enhancing their longevity.

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